Ryder Cup Vice-Captain Questions Why Young Golfers 'Risk Throwing Away Their Careers' To Join LIV

Edoardo Molinari can't understand why golfers in their 20s or 30s would "risk throwing away their careers" to join LIV Golf

Edoardo Molinari
(Image credit: Getty Images)

Ryder Cup vice-captain Edoardo Molinari says he doesn't understand why young golfers "risk throwing away their careers to go to LIV Golf" after revealing Nicolai Hojgaard turned down an offer to join Greg Norman's tour.

In an interview with Gazzetta dello Sport, the Italian also talks about Europe's Ryder Cup chances in New York in 2025, and why he thinks LIV players such as Jon Rahm and Tyrrell Hatton will be in the team.

Molinari was the stats guru behind Luke Donald's Ryder Cup victory in Rome last year, and he'll reprise the role as a vice-captain for Europe at Bethpage in 2025.

Since Europe's victory, Rahm and Hatton have moved to LIV Golf along with Adrian Meronk, who just missed out on being selected.

Molinari understands why a huge offer such as Rahm's would be hard to turn down, or why older golfers would make the switch, but doesn't understand why young up-and-coming golfers would sign for LIV.

“Honestly I don’t understand players who are 20 or 30 years old and risk throwing away their careers to go to LIV Golf,” Molinari told Gazzetta dello Sport.

“Of course, if they come to me and offer me 300 million, it would change my life but they haven’t come."

And Molinari revealed that young Dane Hojgaard had received an offer for sign for LIV but had turned it down.

“A few weeks ago I was speaking to Nicolai Hojgaard, who had a good offer but turned it down because he knows that if he continues to play well, he will still earn a lot of money but will be freer to make certain decisions and will be sure of playing the Majors.

"It is difficult to say no in front of a lot of money, but if you make choices based only on money you risk regretting them a little. Tomorrow". 

Nicolai Hojgaard high-fives playing partner Jon Rahm after making birdie on the first at Marco Simone

Nicolai Hojgaard turned down the chance to join Jon Rahm at LIV

(Image credit: Getty Images)

Even now Molinari will be starting to think about the next Ryder Cup in New York, where he feels Rahm will be lining up in European blue.

"I think that in two years from now we will find a way to call them anyway, the only requirement at the moment is that they are members of the European Tour," Molinari said of Rahm and Hatton.

"I believe that someone like Rahm, whatever the cost, wants to play the Ryder. So I don't I think he will resign from the European circuit." 

Molinari added that "playing away changes everything" as Europe face a huge task trying to retain the Ryder Cup in 2025.

"There will be much less expectation because winning away is almost impossible. The first one who succeeds will do a great feat and the first one who loses at home will make a terrible impression. 

"We know that it is a big advantage for us and that we will have to put more pressure on them." 

Paul Higham

Paul Higham is a sports journalist with over 20 years of experience in covering most major sporting events for both Sky Sports and BBC Sport. He is currently freelance and covers the golf majors on the BBC Sport website.  Highlights over the years include covering that epic Monday finish in the Ryder Cup at Celtic Manor and watching Rory McIlroy produce one of the most dominant Major wins at the 2011 US Open at Congressional. He also writes betting previews and still feels strangely proud of backing Danny Willett when he won the Masters in 2016 - Willett also praised his putting stroke during a media event before the Open at Hoylake. Favourite interviews he's conducted have been with McIlroy, Paul McGinley, Thomas Bjorn, Rickie Fowler and the enigma that is Victor Dubuisson. A big fan of watching any golf from any tour, sadly he spends more time writing about golf than playing these days with two young children, and as a big fair weather golfer claims playing in shorts is worth at least five shots. Being from Liverpool he loves the likes of Hoylake, Birkdale and the stretch of tracks along England's Golf Coast, but would say his favourite courses played are Kingsbarns and Portrush.